Keeping Up With The eJoneses

Keeping Up With The eJoneses

I’ve got a bit of an issue, I’m always keeping up with the eJoneses.

What do I mean by that?  I’m always looking at other peoples online business and comparing it to mine and trying to compete or copy what they are doing.

Let me tell you ladies and gentlemen this is a route to ruin and unhappiness.  I say sod the eJoneses and build a business you love!

Other Peoples Businesses

We peek over the virtual white picket fence and see other people with X employees, product Y, Service Z and think we need to do that to keep up with them.

We never stop to think are X, Y and Z a good fit for me? We never stop to think is this just the latest shiny object?

Derek Sivers said in his excellent little book Anything You Want .

When you make a company, you make a utopia,  It’s where you design your perfect world.

I highlight your because when you are a solopreneur, you are building something that is great for you, not someone else, not a board of directors or share holders and it’s definitely not for Mr Jones down the .com street.

Build A Business YOU Love

I’ve talked about this in the past but we are in a unique period in history where we don’t had to grimly plod down to the dark satanic mills and work for the landed gentry anymore.  We don’t need oppressive jobs, we can strike out on our own.

If you have a little chutzpah we can build our own online freelance business that is a perfect  fit for you.

Some Examples Of Keeping Up With The eJonses

Here are some examples of my trying to keep up with other peoples business ideals.

wpcurve – I saw this amazing business boom and eventually exit to Godaddy, I can build a business like that at ibraininc.com I thought, but I don’t like managment, managing people sucks, I want the right sized business a µAgency of me plus another person to cover maintenance work. I don’t want to build a big team.  I tried but hated it, and ibraininc.com has been sunset and NeilMatthews.co has risen.

dropshipping – this is the new kid on the block, find products that can be sourced from manufactures in China, set up an Amazon of shopify store and sell those good. Have the manufacturer deliver them and make money while you sleep, gave it a go, made a few quid, boring as hell, why would I want to spend time on that?

App Development – I still think this has legs, but I was losing focus on my key WordPress consulting business to focus on building apps as well, it had to go (for now anyway).

Not To Do List

I have a way to combat trying to keep up with the eJoneses, and that is my not to do list.

I have a highly coloured mind map on my wall right in my eye-line and is has my not to do items on it, here’s the list.

  • App development
  • Build an agency (I’ve spent a lot of time building a multi person agency that I hated working in )
  • Buy any new domain names (sound familiar to anyone 🙂 )
  • Focus on selling my business
  • Jump between ideas
  • Go off plan (I make a plan each November)
  • Spend time on tools (I can spend a lot of time messing with new tools / software)
  • Low end productized services (I was trying to create something like wpfixit.com)

If I’m going off piste I look at my not to do list and bring myself back on course.

Wrap Up – Keeping Up With the eJoneses

Build the business you want, not the one you think you need because someone else is doing it that way.

Have fun building your business and don’t be afraid to pivot away from a product or service that you don’t enjoy delivering or creating.

Just because Ms Jones has 100 clients does not mean you need 100 clients, 20 of them may be douche nozzles and need to be sacked.

Build a business YOU love.

I’ll be writing a lot more about small business in the lead up to the launch of my new course Micro Agency School.

How have you been guilty of keeping up with the eJoneses, comments below please.

Photo Credit: kuyabic Flickr via Compfight cc

Doing the seo dance – Keeping Up With The eJoneses

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